St Catherine was a virgin princess and scholar from Alexandria, who lived and died in the 4th century. She became a Christian at the age of 14 when it was banned by the Roman Empire and converted hundreds of others. For this, she was condemned to death on the spiked breaking wheel by Emperor Maxentius, but in answer to her prayer the wheel was destroyed and so she was beheaded instead. Angels are supposed to have carried her body to Mount Sinai, where St Catherine’s Monastery can now be found. She is one of the Fourteen Holy Helpers of the Catholic Church (protecting against sudden death) and her feast day is 25thNovember. The Catherine wheel, a sparking firework which rotates quickly and resembles her destroyed instrument of torture, was named after her.